If you’ve been arrested for a DUII, chances are that you’re already pretty occupied with thoughts of spending time in jail, hiring a DUII attorney, and the possibility of paying fines, going to court, and dealing with the social, financial, and legal consequences of your actions. There is, however, another point you’ll need to start thinking about: your transportation.
After your arrest, your license will automatically be suspended for a certain period of time. Refusing to submit to sobriety tests can have this same result due to Oregon’s implied consent laws. However, the length of these suspensions may vary. And if you are subsequently convicted, even of a first offense DUII, you may have to endure longer revocation sentences of your driver’s license.
That may not be the end of your driving woes, though. Because the average drunk driver has driven 80 times under the influence before they’re first arrested, municipalities can enact harsh punishments on those who are charged with this crime. Even after you have paid fines and served time, you still may be forced to install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle and comply with other requirements from the court. That said, the hardships you may face may not all stem from the criminal justice system itself. You may experience various financial difficulties as a result of your arrest (even if you’re able to take part in the DUII diversion process). Case in point: your car insurance premiums may increase significantly following your arrest.
Can My DUII Charges Affect My Car Insurance?
Unfortunately, yes. Depending on the circumstances of your case (for instance, whether your crime involved property damage, injuries, or is being treated as a felony), you may face more significant premium increases. But being convicted of a DUII will almost certainly increase the amount you’ll be required to pay for car insurance. Because you’ll essentially be seen by your insurer as a higher risk driver, even being arrested for driving under the influence of intoxicants can have a profound effect on what you’ll be forced to pay. In many cases, you’ll also have to file a specific insurance document made for problem drivers. While the premium increases may vary widely, some drivers who have been convicted of a DUII experience insurance premium hikes of three to five times higher than what they paid before their arrest.
Can Participation in a DUII Diversion Program Impact My Insurance Premiums?
If this is your first time ever being arrested and convicted of an alcohol-related crime, you may be entitled to take part in the DUII diversion process. The successful completion of this DUII diversion program can allow the charges against you to be dropped, which means you will not have a DUII conviction on your record. (If you fail to complete the program, however, you will be sentenced as if you had entered a guilty plea.) But whether completing the DUII diversion program will eliminate insurance hikes isn’t quite so clear. In some cases, your DUII arrest may have only a slight effect on your insurance premiums — or in rare situations, no noticeable effect at all. Others may still experience significant insurance increases due to their arrest and the circumstances of the crime, even if they are not actually convicted. It’s best to discuss the situation with your lawyer prior to making a final decision on which route to take in a court of law, particularly if insurance payments may be a big consideration for you.
Although insurance hikes may not be your first thought if you’re arrested for a DUII, this concern may have a significant impact on your quality of life later on. When you meet with your attorney to discuss your legal options (including the possibility of participating in a DUII diversion program), you may want to find out how the choices you make during this important period of time might affect your future.